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How much sleep do you get every night? Doctors recommend getting eight hours if you can, however a new study published in USA Today says the 30% of working adults who suffer from lack of sleep and only get 6 hours every night are four times more likely to have a stroke.
Lead author of the report Megan Ruiter stated the findings are the first to apply to adults who aren’t overweight and have no other risk factors.
People know how important diet and exercise are in preventing strokes,” says Ruiter, of the University of Alabama in Birmingham.
“The public is less aware of the impact of insufficient amounts of sleep. Sleep is important – the body is stressed when it doesn’t get the right amount.”
The National Sleep Foundation said the number of individuals who report eight or more hours of sleep a night has dropped from 38% in 2001 to 28%. A government study last month discovered that 30% of working adults get six hours or less. Health professionals recommend seven to nine.
Previous research has found that prolonged sleep deprivation can lead to an increased risk for cardiovascular events, such as heart attacks.
However, this new research concentrates on individuals who are not overweight, says Reena Pande, a cardiologist at Brigham and Women’s Hospital in Boston.
“This makes you scratch your head and say it’s not just the known factors,” says Pande. “Less sleep is clearly linked to many harmful changes in the cardiovascular system.”
The three-year study consisted of 5,666 adults and discovered that the stroke risk was four times higher with less than six hours a night when compared to seven to eight hours. The results applied to people whose body mass index (BMI) – a number based on height and weight – was standard and who were at no risk for sleep apnea.
Click here to read the full article on USA Today.